Twice a year (at Christmas and Easter) the City of San Luis Potosi, Mexico has a festival of light in which they illuminate several of their oldest cathedrals using the latest in projections technology. The end result is nothing short of spectacular. Viewers are able to see the historic structure in ways that could never have been imagined or intended by the original architects. Using projection technology, the building becomes becomes alive, leaving the viewer completely awestruck. This was my first introduction to the use of projection technology on architecture.
The use of this technology will become increasingly commonplace in our cities in the near future. There is a great civic importance to this type of technology in our cities. The spectacle can be adapted to any type of celebration or cultural programing which will bring people into the streets at all hours of the night for entertainment purposes. That in turn makes cities safer in the evening and spreads some much needed cash to small businesses nearest to the spectacle. For all its civic implications, this type of technology will have an even larger impact in the world of corporate advertising.
Advertising will begin to take on a “Blade Runner” type quality and completely change the playing field on what types of adverting are and are not acceptable in an urban environment. New norms will be created and laws will have to adapt to the changing technology of advertising. At the end of this process more and more cities will look like Las Vegas and Hong Kong spliced with the urban environments of “Blade Runner” and “AI”. Most cities in the United States will naturally be more prone to regulation whereas many of the most dynamic cities in Mexico will be completely transformed. It will be interesting to see how it all turns out.
For footage on the Festival of Light in San Luis Potosi or for footage of advertising using projection technology; Click on the links below to see viewer contributed video footage on youtube.